Friday, June 06, 2008

Upper East Side, 66th Street Between Fifth and Madison Avenues

Mary Sargent © 2008 click to enlarge

Here it is, folks. The Charles Scribner House, the destination for this photowalk. Lovely, but – well, it doesn't seem more lovely than many, many other townhouses on the Upper East Side.

WELL, this is interesting. I just went online and found the original New York Times Streetscapes column by Christopher Gray that was used for the entry in Streetscapes (the book) by Christopher Gray. However, the first and last paragraphs of the newspaper column were omitted from the book. The first paragraph:

NEW YORK'S blocks are full of hidden networks, families of buildings related by appearance, type or design. One of these is now in mid-restoration as the Polish Mission cleans and repairs the facade of the 1912 Charles Scribner house at 9 East 66th Street, one of six buildings in Manhattan designed by Ernest Flagg for the publishing family.

The book mentions only three buildings designed by Flagg for the Scribners. Flagg was, by the way, Charles Scribner's brother-in-law. This is the last paragraph from the original column:

Although the Scribner family still runs Charles Scribner's Sons it sold the last
of the Flagg-Scribner buildings, 597 Fifth Avenue, in 1984 . . . But all the
structures survive, a distinct group that -- for those who care to look for it
-- gives a certain order to New York's often chaotic streets.

The thrust of the newspaper article is that this building is one of six that form a "hidden network" and you might want to search out the other five because they're all still standing.

The thrust of the article in the book is that this is the house of Charles Scribner and isn't it lovely.

You can probably tell which version I prefer.

BTW this is now the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Poland to the United Nations.

See map.

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